A worldwide computer chip shortage combined with major shipping delays means many Christmas shoppers won’t be able to find the items they’re looking for and have them delivered before December 25th.
If you typically wait until Black Friday and Cyber Monday to do the bulk of your shopping, you definitely want to get started now, especially since we’re already seeing some of the biggest discounts on some of the hottest gadgets already. Here are some of my favorite finds so far, along with advice on ways to shop smart and save big:
Samsung’s new Galaxy Z-series foldables are two of the newest and most striking pieces of tech on the planet.
The Galaxy Z Fold3 looks like a normal smartphone when it’s closed, but open it up to the full 7.6-inch Infinity Flex Display — and wow! There are dual screens for multitasking, you can use an S-Pen to take notes or draw, and it’s a prime productivity powerhouse to keep you up to speed and entertained on the go.
The Galaxy Z Flip3 Bespoke Edition is also one of the hottest handsets ever made — and selling out fast! Comes in nearly 50 color combinations, front and dual rear cameras, and you can take videos and photos – including hands-free selfies – while it’s closed … or flip it open and use the display as a viewfinder. You can also get messages and notifications with the Z Flip3 closed, on the cover screen.
INCREDIBLE Black Friday specials started on Samsung.com last week — pretty amazing low prices and trade-ins already!
Robot vacuums have become a lot smarter over the past few years, but this could be the smartest one yet — especially combined with Black Friday deals! The newest iRobot Roomba j7+ Self-Emptying really is a total set-it-and-forget super-stress-free clean-up companion. This newest model robot vacuum not only empties itself; it also uses vision sensors to detect and avoid objects such as cords, cables, and, yes, even pet poop. So, if your best friend goes on the floor, your robot vacuum won’t smear it all over your house. It uses next-generation computing and AI-smarts to navigate safely, identify obstacles, avoid hazards, learn your cleaning patterns, and it gets smarter every time it cleans. Its charging base also empties the vacuum, so you don’t have to worry about cleaning it out for up to two months.
BALANCING YOUR BUDGET
A recent survey shows 70% of Americans overspend during the holidays — this holiday could be even worse because people feel like they need to make up for lost time. If you have a solid grip on your budget, look at a service like Affirm. Choosing this pay-over-time option at checkout lets you spread out the cost of a gift into biweekly or monthly payments to help you stay within your budget — no hidden or late fees — no surprises. If approved, you can use it to shop at nearly 30-thousand different retailers like Target, Williams Sonoma, American Airlines, Walmart, Peloton, and a ton more. What I really like is that it shows the total cost of your purchase upfront in simple dollars and never charges you more than you agree to.
FINDING THE BEST BARGAINS
Another great tip here, start your shopping at Slickdeals.net — there are some 12-million people vetting and voting on the best deals on the internet — so that you know you’re always getting the best value for your money. You can use it to discover the very best products at the best prices from all the top retailers like Walmart and Amazon. Plus — Slickdeals Rewards lets you get cash back for shopping at your favorite stores and you earn points for every purchase through Slickdeals too, that you can redeem for cash or gift cards. There’s an app, website, and browser extension too — the latter of which keeps an eye on your online purchases and notifies you if there’s a coupon you can apply. Plus, it also calls out the hottest deals at that particular retailer. Don’t forget to set a deal alert, so you’re notified when something matching your criteria gets posted.
HANDY HOLIDAY HELPER
Here’s a handy must-have: The GE-branded Cync Outdoor Smart Plug lets you turn outside holiday decorations on and off from inside your home—or anywhere really—thanks to its companion app. You can control it with your voice even — through Alexa or Google — so no more running outside in the cold and snow to plug and unplug your lights all the time. Secret tip, it’s more than $10 off from Black Friday through December 1st at Lowes! (Normally around $30, but $17 from 11/26 to 12/1 at Lowes.)
Keep checking back here, I’m posting a whole lot more deals, steals, and insider tips over the next few days!